Summer Days In Avonlea


Summer Days In Avonlea
Summer time in Avonlea is filled with hard work, community and long, beautiful, Prince Edward Island days. Here, we look at what a typical summer would have been like.   WORD COUNT: 917   EST READING TIME: ABOUT 5 MINUTES   The world of Road to Avonlea is pristine, but nothing paints a more idyllic image than summer in Prince Edward Island. Imagine, running through fields of lightly scented grass, the sun shining, friends laughing. Or the feel of the gentle sea breeze on your skin as you spend days in the white sands of the dunes, the hotel in the background, alive with all its well- to- do guests who have escaped to the coast for the summer. You can imagine it just as L.M. Montgomery wrote in the Golden Road, “every turn and dip revealed a fresh charm and a new loveliness to eager hearts and unspoiled eyes.”   Kids on the Avonlea shore during summer, season seven   Of course, summer days for the children of Avonlea were not all filled with relaxation and flying kites on the coast. Freed from the confines of the school house, parents took advantage of the extra helping hands around the farm and the home. According to My Farm Education, the best time to bail your hay is in June or July, depending on the variety of the plant. As seen in the episode, “Stranger In The Night” we know that this is a family affair, so at least a week of summer vacation would be dedicated to gathering the crop, curing, and bailing it. Household chores, such as cleaning and canning preserves (we tried our hand at making our own preserves; take a look at the recipe here) would also require assistance. If you were part of a family that required everyone to pitch in you might find yourself in a similar situation to Wiley Lester, working at the Dale Cannery for a couple months, sorting lobster and fish. Quite the smelly summer!   The Dale Cannery of Avonle in summer, Road to Avonlea   Summer in any rural community is a time for community gathering; Avonlea is no exception. Community picnics would be planned, and many a three-legged races would occur. Avonlea and the rest of Canada, would celebrate Canada’s formation as a country, also known as Dominion Day. It is a day of excitement where the whole community would show up to share food, participate in raffles, host contests and, of course, watch fireworks. In season seven, episode two, “Love May Be Blind, But The Neighbours Ain’t” we see the whole community of Avonlea show up for egg races, bake offs, canoeing and a particularly memorable auction for a lunch date with the gentlemen of Avonlea. If you were lucky enough to live in a community that played host to traveling carnivals, you were in for a treat. According to “The Midway on the Margins: The first half of the twentieth century,”the months of May to October, were the prime time for traveling carnivals in both Canada and the USA. Summer months were the optimal time for patron turn out. After all, who would want to stay inside, when they could go to a carnival? As we’ve seen in Road to Avonlea, communities like rural Avonlea might not have been quick to embrace these traveling shows and would have been suspicious of the motives and morality of those who worked for the fair. However, once ensconced in the local field, these travelling shows became a fast attraction for youth. These carnivals included marvels meant to mesmerize and enchant such as mermaids, strong men, and bearded ladies. Carnivals also came equipped with delicacies like cotton candy and hot dogs, as well as rides like Ferris wheels. Who could forget the normally composed Rachel Lynde’s Ferris wheel experience in “Davey and the Mermaid”?   Rachel Lynde, eating cotton candy at a summer fair, Road to Avonlea season seven   Doesn’t Avonlea sound like the ideal place to spend the summer? L.M Montgomery, whose books ‘Chronicles of Avonlea’ and ‘Further Chronicles of Avonlea’, inspired the storylines of the television series, was particularly in love with summer on her beloved Prince Edward Island. She often referred to whimsical summer days in both her books and poems. Montgomery’s descriptions of days of youth spent in her rural community are so vivid and wonderful, that they have inspired many to travel to PEI between the months of June and August.

“You never know what peace is until you walk on the shores or in the fields or along the winding red roads of Prince Edward Island in a summer twilight when the dew is falling, and the old stars are peeping out and the sea keeps its mighty tryst with the little land it loves.”

– Lucy Maud Montgomery

The scope of the beauty Montgomery described transferred over to the depiction of summer days throughout the seven seasons of Road to Avonlea, giving viewers a glimpse into a calmer, and perhaps more languid time. If a more idyllic vision exists, we have yet to find it. What do you love about Summer days in Avonlea? Is it the picturesque landscapes, the fashions, or the whole idea of a slower paced life? Let us know in the comments! For more Road to Avonlea, visit Shop at Sullivan and Gazebo TV.   Adriana Pacheco, Sullivan Entertainment